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If earth could give you treasure,
As boundless as desire,
To call back words of ire:
That reckless doings store;
Who drink that one glass more.
Strange feet are on the stair,
What is it that they bear?
Say, do not you deplore
Ne'er touch that-one glass more.
The solemn prayers you hear;
You only know she's near :
On all your earthly store;
Caused by that—one glass more.
The children round you creep;
With tears you cannot weep:
Days gone you now run o'er;
T. J. OUSELEY.
THE OPEN-AIR MISSION. This excellent society continues to send forth its useful agents. Many of them are total abstainers, and do not fail to exhort their motley hearers to sign the pledge. From the annual report just issued, we make the following extracts :
LINCOLN'S INN FIELDS. “A striking, though by no means uncommon case of usefulness has occurred here. A man more than ninety years of age died recently, who, it is believed, owes his conversion at the age of ninety to an Open-Air service. He was at one time worth £150,000, but having been reduced to deep poverty, he determined to destroy himself. For this purpose one evening in 1860 he left his house to go into Lincoln's Inn Fields and watch for an opportunity when only a few persons were about to commit suicide; it was about nine in the evening when he reached the above square. As he was passing round it, he saw a crowd round a man who was just commencing to read the account of the conversion of the Philippian gaoler. The words, “Do thyself no harm," struck his attention; he stopped to listen. The Scripture that was read and the truths that were spoken were blessed by God to the old man's soul.”
MAIDSTONE. “ Visited by an agent from the Mission, who aided the local friends. 4,000 tracts were distributed among the soldiers and civilians. Several short addresses were given during the day. A half-drunken man very zealous in bringing the people to hear what the preacher had got to say. An Open-Air service was held in front of the Town Hall on the evening preceding, and another on the evening of the race-day. Drunkenness and fighting were prevalent."
CROYDON. “ About 9,000 tracts were given away during the two days by our agent and the two City Missionaries of the district, and an Open-Air service held each evening. Much drunkenness was visible.”
FAIRLOP FRIDAY. “ The first Friday in July is so called by the residents in the East End of London. Some of the boat-builders and block-makers keep up a custom established by John Day about 100 years ago. Parties go to Hainault Forest in boats mounted on wheels, and decorated with flags. Thousands
upon thousands of the population turn out to witness their return, near midnight. Consequently, the Whitechapel and Mile End roads are so thronged with people that in some places it is difficult to
Bands of music play in the windows or balconies of many of the public-houses, and many of the publicans burn red, white, aud blue lights, and let off fireworks. Costermongers, cheap-jacks, and all sorts of itinerant vendors, are found all along these streets. One or two were selling impure and immoral prints and songs. To meet this mass of people about 100 open-air preachers assembled at different points along the roads. They commenced soon after seven o'clock, and some of them continued at their stations till past midnight, at which bour the public-houses were crammed, and much drunkenness and immorality abounded.
We should much like to see a Temperance Open-Air Mission established. It would improve, strengthen, and extend the open-air advocacy of our principles.
MY LAST GLASS.
“It is now nearly seven years," said Harry Rose to his shopmate, Bob Travers, who, seated with him in his snug little parlour, had come over the way to have a chat with him about teetotalism. “It is now nearly seven years since I had my last glass, and well do I remember the occasion when I vowed, with all my heart, never again to taste the accursed stuff. Hawkins at that time kept the 'Rising Sun,' and though I now say it to my shame, I was much oftener in his house than my own. Well, I got married, and ere I had time seriously to think of the responsible charge I had made, my beloved Nell was mother of three children. I found my cares increasing, and now and then a pang of grief shot through my heart, on returning from the 'Rising Sun’penniless, and with an oppressive sense of my own misconduct. On the following morning, when at work, and prostrated both in mind and body, from the effects of my debauch, a thousand times have I resolved never to do the like again. But somehow or other, Bob, my evil genius was seldom long absent to lure me from any good resolve I might form. At that time there was a club of us met in Hawkins's back room, and a jolly open-hearted set of young fellows we were. There were about a dozen of us, all in good situations, with crack wages, and by no means stingy in making the money go. We all stood in high feather with mine host of the Rising Sun;' in fact, we were bowed out and in; the landlord said his kindest word, and the landlady put on her blandest smiles whenever a member of the club passed on his way to the room. In this manner time passed on for years without in any way disturbing the amicable relations that existed between Hawkins and his customers. But I need not tell you, Bob, that, amid all this plain sailing, there was occasionally a bit of a storm broke out in the shape of an extra spree-sometimes an unexpected breeze drove us out of our reckoning, capsizing some, and dashing others, with some severity, on the rocks.
“Yes,” continued Larry, drawing a long breath, and relieving a dismal recollection that arose with a sigh, “ There was poor Tom Fowler-his was a terrible case; on going home from a meeting of the club he missed a foot on the stair, fell back, and was killed. There are few of that club left now. Many are dead, having shattered their sturdy frames by greeting too often the Rising Sun;' not, you will observe, the glorious orb of nature that showers down light and life, wherever it traverses,
on the human race, but the ‘Rising Sun' of Hawkins, the publican, which, in truth, meant the declining 'sun’ of others.
“ Strange to say, however, although the remnant left of the club had witnessed many sad reverses among their number, and all more or less were affected in health, character, and purse by our late hours and thriftless habits, it did not in the least deter us from visiting Hawkins as usual, and swallowing his strong punch and sparkling ales. I can speak for myself, Bob, I was infatuated, spell-bound to that back-room, and felt miserable if a night passed in which I had not shared in its revelry. My beloved Nell, I could see, was beginning to lose all hopes of me. Many a quiet tear have 1 seen gathering in her eye, as her gentle expostulations, full of love, fell on my ear, trying to persuade me to remain at home with the children ; yet, although I loved her and them to distraction, it was in vain I was urged to withdraw myself from the company at Hawkins's. The truth is, it had become a necessity to me, that absorbed in its fascinating strength every consideration of duty and honour. I felt, Bob, the appetite for strong drink every day gaining strength with me, and my power of self-control dying rapidly away. I was tied neck and heel to the monster, and carried hither and thither just as it pleased.
“But a storm was silently gathering, soon to burst on my poor head. For a long time previously, I had noticed a coldness on the part of my employers towards me. I was then foreman, and on going to receive my pay, had a note placed in my hand by the cashier, in which I was informed that, in a fortnight after, my services would be dispensed with. I walked erect from the place, my limbs shaking with agitation. I had not courage to go home to inform my wife, but hastened to the • Rising Sun’ to get a tumbler to compose my nerves.
I swallowed three or four in succession, filled a bottle of whisky, and carried it home in my pocket. My wife could see there was something unusually sore with me, and asked, as I entered, what the depressing cause might be. I told her the truth, but told her not to despair, as I should soon get another situation.
" The fortnight passed, during which I drank furiously. At last I was an idle man--trade dull, and no immediate prospect of employment. I had still a little money left, but every day was rendering it less. I found time an awful burden on my shoulders, and again sought the Rising Sun' to dissipate my grief. My old companions I found much the same, but Hawkins, I thought, did not treat me with that warmth I used to receive. I could not now ring his bell and give the lavish orders I did formerly. My last shilling had gone; want stood grinning at my door; and, to add to my grief, my youngest child sickened and died. I was almost mad, and knew not in what direction to turn my footsteps. I wrote to a friend at a distance for money, but in the meantime a few shillings were urgently wanted for immediate expenses.
“I thought on Hawkins. During the last four years I had given him above a hundred pounds, besides causing a quantity of custom to come his way. Thither I repaired, and, with a subdued voice, enquired for Mr. Hawkins. I thought the servant could discern in my doleful countenance that I had no money. Instead of being shown to the club room in which I had been so long a welcome star, I was quietly ushered to one of the side boxes. Just as I was entering, I could see Hawkins entering another room in which was a roaring company. Quite certain that he had observed me, I requested the girl to inform the landlord that I wished to see him for a few minutes. Minutes passed on—a whole hour had gone by-but no appearance of Hawkins. I could not help then feeling my bitter and humiliated position. I rose to my feet indignant with rage, and, nearly choking with the anguish that wrung my heart, my hand unconsciously sought the bell-pull. The door was opened, when I was informed by the same girl that Mr. Hawkins had gone out an hour before. Just after she had delivered her message, I tottered to the door, almost unable to support myself,
I cursing in my breast the heartless cormorant whom I had so assiduously helped to pamper. I had just reached the outside, when who should I meet right in the face but Hawkins, his face flushed and blotted by recent indulgence, his heavy gold chain and watch ostentatiously flaunting before me, as if to remind me more acutely of my poverty and folly. I had not power to open my lips. I am sure he would have passed without speaking could he have done so unobserved. Drawing himself up consequentially, he addressed me: “Ha, Mr. Rose, rather behind my time a little; had to go out about repairing that gig of mine that broke down at the races. I'm sorry for you, very; s'pose you want me to the funeral, oh yes. Keep up your heart, and be like me; mind number one; good bye.' Filled with inexpressible loathing, I sauntered down the street, scarcely knowing in what direction I wandered, and thinking my present sufferings a just retribution for my long-continued foolishness. Unexpectedly, I encountered Mr. -, an old frequenter of the